Barber’s Hate Letter to LGBT Teens

Many of us recently offered our thoughts on what we would say about sex and sexuality to a teenager and one of the common themes was to make sure that if that teen were gay, that was okay and normal and should never be a source of shame. Matt Barber of Liberty Counsel does the exact opposite in his open letter to gay teens. Most of it is just lame preaching like this:

You will read truth here, not because I say it’s true – I’m nobody – but, rather, because the Creator of the universe, the very God Who wove you together in your mother’s womb made it true.

His truths never change.

Really? Because, if the Bible is to be believed, he demanded that women be stoned to death if they aren’t virgins on their wedding day, along with many other barbaric commands. Has that truth never changed?

I have three kids, a boy and two girls. My son will soon enter his teenage years. I’ve had many people ask me what I’d say to my children if one of them came to me and declared: “Dad, I’m gay.”

Here’s what I’d say. I’d tell them exactly what I’m about to tell you.

I love you. I neither judge you nor condemn you. I accept you and I would die for you.

But you are not “gay.”

Yes, you may be physically attracted to people of the same sex, but how you act on those attractions is entirely your choice. Who you are – your identity – is not defined by your sexual feelings, temptations or behaviors. The difference between who you are and what you feel or do is as the difference between night and day.

He has it exactly backwards, of course. Who you are, your identity, is, in fact, defined by your desires and preferences. That’s why it’s called a sexual orientation. A straight person can choose to have sex with someone of the same gender (porn stars do it routintely) and a gay person can choose to have sex with someone of the opposite gender (lots of closeted gay people in sham marriages have done that), but that does not change who they are or what their orientation is at all.

Homosexual behavior is always wrong – demonstrably and absolutely wrong.

Period.

Every major world religion, thousands of years of history and uncompromising human biology declare this objective reality from the rooftops.

“Uncompromising human biology”? Is he playing a game of madlibs? What is that first word doing in that phrase at all?

Though your heart may deceive you, something deep within you knows this to be true. Scripture says, “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. …” …

If you are caught up in homosexual sin, you know – intuitively you know – that such conduct is wrong, that it is both immoral and unnatural behavior.

Don’t you love being told what you really know? I’ll take presumptuous bullshit for $1000, Alex.

In fact, homosexual sin is expressly identified in both the Old and New Testaments as being among the list of sins that, if committed without repentance, will prevent you from “inheriting the kingdom of God.”

That is to say, yes; unrepentant homosexual behavior is disobedience to God. If we rebel against God and refuse to repent and ask His forgiveness, then we have chosen our own fate – we have chosen to disqualify ourselves from heaven.

We have chosen hell.

Yes, that’s a good way to handle a gay teenager — tell them that they’re going to burn in hell for eternity because they’re gay. That will help so much.

Love without truth is hate.

This is what Daniel Dennett calls a “deepity.” It is, quite literally, gibberish. It’s meaningless nonsense phrases in a way that makes it sound as though it expresses some profound idea.

But there is hope.

Jesus loves you with a love that no human can fully grasp. This is true not because of your so-called “sexual orientation,” but, rather, it is true in spite of it.

Jesus said, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)

Kids, take your sexual confusion – your struggle with sin – to Christ.

Yes, and when that fails to change your sexual orientation, we’ll blame it on your lack of faith. You obviously just don’t want to change. And then you’ll probably try to kill yourself. But don’t worry, they love you so much that they want to change everything you are. Love — you’re doing it wrong.

57 comments on this post.
  1. frog:

    Re: “Love without truth is hate” = “deepity”

    Oh, I dunno, “I love you. I neither judge you nor condemn you. I accept you and I would die for you” followed by a lot of bullshit and lies sounds pretty much like “hate” to me.

    (I love the term “a deepity”! And yes, I agree, Barber’s statement, as he means it, is total deepity. I’m just being cheeky.)

  2. unbound:

    So tell me again why the entire xtian fundie world wasn’t on TV 24×7 demanding that Bristol Palin be stoned to death due to the eternal word of god?

  3. penasquito:

    Love without truth is hate

    can be expressed as Love – Truth = Hate

    if we add Truth to both sides, we see that

    Love = Hate + Truth

    We also get Love – Hate = Truth

    Fun with Deepity

  4. matty1:

    Kids, take your sexual confusion – your struggle with sin – to Christ

    I lost count of the number of ways this sounds wrong.

  5. Sastra:

    If you are caught up in homosexual sin, you know – intuitively you know – that such conduct is wrong, that it is both immoral and unnatural behavior.

    This appeal to intuition is an old trick: “deep down, you know the truth.” Your heart or mind or intellect may be telling you one thing — but you can always trust your intuition. It’s always right.

    And so it is. But there’s no magic involved. Your intuition is always right because you only identify your “intuition” and separate it from what came out of your heart, mind, or intellect after the fact. Every internal conflict is a conflict. Just look back at whichever one of your choices you wish you’d taken and credit it with amazing prescience.

    Or, in the case of the dishonest bigot writing the letter, identity one of the emotions a worried teenager experiences as THE emotion, THE intuition, THE voice of conscience coming right from God … and encourage them to label all their other drives and choices as wrong by default. Manipulate the process and make it seem as if the truth is intuitive, an internal guide they can either choose to follow or ignore. You’re not saying homosexuality is wrong: God is not saying homosexuality is wrong: the homosexual teen is saying it themselves.

    Don’t you just KNOW you’re guilty?

    Hell, this is one of the major apologetic techniques for Christianity as a whole. You know you’re a sinner in need of forgiveness just by being human. Of course some reverend is going to appropriate it for a more minor issue.

  6. thesandiseattle:

    Love without Truth is well at least not pure love. Of course most love, whether we admit to it or not is conditional. It may be unromantic (perhaps even cynical) to say it , but its a truth.

  7. John Pieret:

    If you are caught up in homosexual sin, you know – intuitively you know – that such conduct is wrong, that it is both immoral and unnatural behavior.

    If you are unfortunate enough to be raised by Matt Barber of someone of his ilk, you will have absorbed the message that such behavior is disfavored and will bring disapproval by others in your social group. That’s why the talibangelicals fight against anti-bullying laws … how else can they enforce their disapproval? That’s a far cry from intuitively knowing it is wrong.

  8. Gretchen:

    The difference between who you are and what you feel or do is as the difference between night and day.

    I would like to hear Matt Barber describe who he is without any mention of what he feels or does, or any statement which gives an indication of such.

    Then I’d like to hear him explain how he would remain himself if he was ordered to never again feel something he has felt often, or do something he loves and has always done.

    Then I’d like to see him go jump in a lake.

  9. raven:

    So tell me again why the entire xtian fundie world wasn’t on TV 24×7 demanding that Bristol Palin be stoned to death due to the eternal word of god?

    Hypocrisy is their third major sacrament, plus hate and lies.

    Sarah Palin has so far sacrificed two of her children on the altar of her Oogedy Boogedy xian death cult. Her son managed to impregnate his girlfriend so they had a quick marriage and are now divorced.

  10. Raging Bee:

    Jesus loves you with a love that no human can fully grasp. This is true not because of your so-called “sexual orientation,” but, rather, it is true in spite of it.

    Then why should it matter whether someone is gay, straight, or bi?

    This guy’s slimy emotional bullying isn’t even internally consistent. Would acting on gay desires lead you to Hell, or would Jesus love you whether or not you’re gay?

    (And his “I am nobody/I speak with the voice of God” schtick is just more hypocricy. What a passive-aggressive self-important little shit.)

  11. Subtract Hominem:

    So is this the kickoff of his new “Sorry, F****t, It Never Gets Better™” program?

    /Vomit.

  12. Raging Bee:

    Love without truth is hate.

    Mock the deepity all you want folks, but it describes Barber’s brand of “love” more neatly than I ever could.

  13. scienceavenger:

    “You will read truth here, not because I say it’s true – I’m nobody – but, rather, because the Creator of the universe, the very God Who…”

    Stop. Really. Perhaps someone should have asked Barber what he would say to a gay American teenager in the 21st century, because a majority of them would stop listening at this point. They’ve heard all that bible-babble before.

    FWIW, here’s what I said to my teen early on: I don’t care if you have girlfriends. I don’t care if you have boyfriends. I don’t care what color your hair is or what parts of your body you choose to pierce or what music you are listening to when you do it. Stay out of trouble with the law, make good grades in school, and don’t produce any children you aren’t able to raise. The rest is trivial.

    I didn’t have to tell him to run away when an idiot like Matt Barber came his way waving a Bible. He figured that out early on.

  14. Michael Heath:

    Matt Barber:

    . . . unrepentant homosexual behavior is disobedience to God. If we rebel against God and refuse to repent and ask His forgiveness, then we have chosen our own fate – we have chosen to disqualify ourselves from heaven.
    We have chosen hell.

    We need to continually pound home the near-infinite evil, no hyperbole intended, such a god would be if this were actually true. The fact Hell-believing Christians are able to avoid actually thinking through the ramifications of Hell is partly our fault. We need to be consistently vociferous about the evil they embrace and promote when the topic comes up. We need to create cognitive dissonance in them given they have no moral argument for their behavior when it comes to this belief (given their celebration of a god they believe has this nature).

    The last time I brought this up in meat-world was with two believers last Autumn. I was speaking to them dispassionately; pointing out the near-infinite level of evil in play if God condemned even one human to Hell as described in the Bible. I was using their own moral standard to note this easily qualified as near-infinite evil since they’re pro-death penalty for all sorts of crimes. This had them physically jumping up and down they were so distraught by having to consider the actual implications of what they believe. I’ve yet to encounter one Christian who can confront and then directly defend their fealty to their evil, imagined god; it’s avoidance all the way baby.

  15. Modusoperandi:

    Love without truth is hate.

    And hate plus lies equals Matt Barber.

  16. eric:

    If we rebel against God and refuse to repent and ask His forgiveness, then we have chosen our own fate – we have chosen to disqualify ourselves from heaven.

    Is it just me or is Barber missing the big merciful part of his own theology? Seems to me that if one believes homosexuality is a sin, and one really loves a gay person, then what you tell them is exactly what you tell every other sinner. I.e., if they ask forgiveness for their sins, both known and unknown, they’ll be saved.

    Wrong or right, Christian theology it doesn’t explain or condone the exceptionally nasty messaging to gays that Barber is espousing. If you’re telling sinners to repent, that’s arguably coming from the bible. If you’re telling Bob-the-sinner-over-there that he’s going to hell while telling everyone else to repent, that particular message coming from your own bigotry against Bob.

  17. jnorris:

    And after telling your son that you really are disappointed in him as a human, remember, he will decide in what nursing home you spend the last few years of your life. For his sake I hope he would warehouse you and never look back.

  18. Raging Bee:

    We have chosen hell.

    Right. It’s not God’s fault for CREATING Hell, it’s not God’s fault for ALLOWING people to be dragged to Hell for trivial harmless “sins,” it’s our fault for “choosing” what God created. Did these Bible-thumpers even learn the most basic concepts of personal responsibility?

  19. rork:

    “intuitively you know – that such conduct is wrong, that it is both immoral and unnatural behavior”.
    Like others, I cry bullshit.
    It never, ever, felt immoral or unnatural, with men, or women. Maybe cause I didn’t carry biblical baggage (though I agree with some of Christs ideas). I did feel a bit more like a rebel with men – I’m breaking someone else’s stupid moral code. Naner, naner. Nothing bad about that – in fact that made it more attractive I think.

  20. otrame:

    Then I’d like to see him go jump in a lake.

    Yeah. That would be fun.

  21. Ichthyic:

    wait…

    who’s Matt Barber anyway?

  22. ArtK:

    @ Gretchen

    I would like to hear Matt Barber describe who he is without any mention of what he feels or does, or any statement which gives an indication of such.

    Then I’d like to hear him explain how he would remain himself if he was ordered to never again feel something he has felt often, or do something he loves and has always done.

    Then I’d like to see him go jump in a lake.

    Can we skip steps 1 & 2, please and go straight to jumping in the lake? The first two would be beyond painful to listen to or read. I don’t support torture, whether the victim is human, animal, logic or the English language. Listening to Barber try to justify himself would cover three of the four.

  23. d.c.wilson:

    It’s actually been mathematically proven that to solve the relationship among love, hate, and the truth requires the is use of the quadratic equation.

  24. Dr X:

    you may be physically attracted to people of the same sex, but how you act on those attractions is entirely your choice. Who you are – your identity – is not defined by your sexual feelings, temptations or behaviors.

    And there’s no possibility that Barber has a deeply personal stake in seeing it this way.

  25. jesseneedham:

    that could just have well come from a chick tract.

  26. ohioobserver:

    This guy is an emotional terrorist.

    In my work with teenagers over more than 30 years, I have seen, or heard about, too many teens who are known to have ended their lives over just this issue (they left notes or told their friends before the act). Countless other teen suicides occur every year whose motives are unknown, and we can only guess how many struggled with their sexuality. Every teen, gay or straight, needs to be shown that gay men and women can participate in stable families, raise children, have satisfying careers, and be participating citizens; that being gay does not, should not, mean exclusion. How many deaths is Barber’s message responsible for? He should be kept miles from any young person.

  27. Michael Heath:

    ohioobserver writes:

    This guy is an emotional terrorist.

    I’m not sure many people know what’s meant by the term, ‘emotional terrorist’. But we all do know the term, ‘child abuse’; where that’s what Mr. Barber advocates for here.

    I’m not surprised. If conservative Christians ended child abuse, their numbers would significantly shrink within a couple of generations. It’s the abuse of children which guarantees future generations of adult conservative Christians (authoritarians).

  28. dukeofomnium:

    Don’t you love being told what you really know?

    If I wasn’t told what I really know, I’d never know that I really knew it.

  29. StevoR : Free West Papua, free Tibet, let the Chagossians return!:

    Barber :

    I love you. I neither judge you nor condemn you. I accept you and I would die for you.

    & then shorlty afterwards :

    yes; unrepentant homosexual behavior is disobedience to God. If we rebel against God and refuse to repent and ask His forgiveness, then we have chosen our own fate – we have chosen to disqualify ourselves from heaven. We have chosen hell.

    Yeah, nothing contradictory there, right? Nothing judgmental, condemning and other than accepting inthat eh? (Sarcasm. Extreme sarcasm.)

    Also “we” have chosen hell? Whose “we” arsehole.

    Christians invented the myth of Hell and have used it as a horrific tool for bullying, coercion and emotional abuse ever since.

    As Isaac Asimov put it :

    .. if I were not an atheist, I would believe in a God who would choose to save people on the basis of the totality of their lives and not the pattern of their words. I think He would prefer an honest and righteous atheist to a TV preacher whose every word is God, God, God and whose deed is foul, foul, foul.

    I would also want a God who would not allow a Hell. Infinite torture can only be a punishment for infinite evil, and I don’t believe that infinite evil can be said to exist even in the case of a Hitler. Besides if most human governments are civilised enough to try to eliminate torture and outlaw cruel and unusual punishments, can we expect anything less of an all-merciful God?

    I feel that if there were an afterlife, punishment for evil would be reasonable and of a fixed term. And I feel that the longest and worst punishment would be reserved for those who slandered God by inventing Hell.

    Source : Pages 337-338 “Life After Death” chapter in ‘I Asimov : A memoir’ (Asimov, Bantam, 1995.)

    Matt Barber of Liberty “Counsel” did get one thing right though – he is (a) nobody. Certainly nobody you’d actually want to listen to and take seriously on this issue. Just another homophobic XN bigot and anyone in that despicable category is about the last person anyone struggling with their sexuality should go to for advice.

  30. tbp1:

    Sometimes I really wish there were some kind of test people had to pass before being allowed to become parents.

  31. brettsaunders:

    This is the part I’ve always found so cruel to tell a teenager. It’s utterly impossible to grow up in this country without encountering the meme that being gay is immoral, whether your family is churchgoing or not. Every teen has doubts and insecurities about what they’re doing, that they should do nothing that goes against the group, nothing to stand out, except in the most approved of ways. And that’s why I say the “still, quiet voice”, the “you intuitively know” idea, is so cruel. It’s puts the idea that maybe your insecurity is God talking to you into your head. It’s a hell of a thing to go through high school thinking about.

  32. brettsaunders:

    The above was supposed to have this in the quote with the rest below. Apparently I’m not very good with quotes.

    If you are caught up in homosexual sin, you know – intuitively you know – that such conduct is wrong, that it is both immoral and unnatural behavior.

  33. democommie:

    I LOVE Matt Barber.

    And since I LOVE Matt Barber, I must be honest and tell the TRUTH.

    Matt, buddy, you’re a fuckdouche. You’re a bully who is compsensating for his own feelings of sexual inadequacy and a lack of anything meaningful going on in YOUR life. Sorry, buddy, that’s the truth. Oh, btw, I will cry real tears of pain when you are roasting in the special hell that is reserved for RWA fucktards who use “GOD” for a cudgel. Strike that last part; I will have to be content with still being alive when you’re found dead in your bedroom, wearing a couple of wetsuits, with a rubber ducky up your down ramp.

  34. dugglebogey:

    Why don’t these jerkoffs concentrate on the parts of the bible that say “wearing gold is a sin” or “wearning clothes with mixed fibers is a sin” as much as the ghey?

    Oh right, because the thought of other people doing those things doesn’t make them feel all weird inside, like they’d really want to be doing those things if only they weren’t so insecure.

    Right.

  35. theguy:

    “This is what Daniel Dennett calls a “deepity.” It is, quite literally, gibberish. It’s meaningless nonsense phrases in a way that makes it sound as though it expresses some profound idea.”

    The passage you call a “deepity” is even worse than that. Barber is essentially insisting that all gay relationships are based on hate. If you don’t agree with Barber’s hate, then your relationship is evil.

    Barber’s “deepity” might be the most disgusting sentiment I’ve ever heard.

  36. Open letter to Matt Barber.:

    [...] Actually, being attracted to someone of the same sex, regardless of whether or not you bump hips with them, is precisely what it means to be gay.  As Ed Brayton puts it: [...]

  37. fastlane:

    In fact, homosexual sin is expressly identified in both the Old and New Testaments as being among the list of sins that, if committed without repentance, will prevent you from “inheriting the kingdom of God.”

    Citation really, badly, fucking needed. Old testament, sure. They’re a bit vague, but they are there. Anyone know what NT verses they might be thinking of?

  38. Ichthyic:

    nyone know what NT verses they might be thinking of?

    when in doubt about something that sounds extreme in the NT, assume Paul said it.

    For this reason [idolatry] God gave them up to passions of dishonor; for even their females exchanged the natural use for that which is contrary to nature, and likewise also the males, having left the natural use of the female, were inflamed by their lust for one another, males with males, committing what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the recompense which was fitting for their error.

    translation: Have same gender sex? then you’re going to hell.

    seriously, Christianity as a religion is based far more on Paul than the Gospels, FWICT, and Paul, frankly, was a nutter, likely working WITH the support of the Romans themselves, to create an entirely fuckwitted version of this “new religion”.

    It was doomed as soon as anyone took Paul seriously.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homosexuality_in_the_New_Testament

  39. Ichthyic:

    …or you could look at it as Paul tuning the religion to be more compatible to authoritarian personalities, since Jesus was a hippie.

  40. ambulocetacean:

    Practical question: What is the best way to talk to a teenage self-loathing gay fundie on the internet?

    In another forum I’ve been having a fair bit of back-and-forth with a 15-year-old home-schooled fundie creationist boy who says he’s gay (or, as he puts it, “If I wasn’t a Christian I would be gay”) but who thinks all gay people deserve to burn in hell for all eternity (including his gay cousin) and who intends to suppress his homosexuality for his entire life. It causes him quite a bit of angst.

    I’ve iterated and reiterated to him that sexual orientation is innate and essentially immutable and nothing to feel wrong or guilty about. And that the idea of his god making someone gay and then torturing them for that for all eternity is monstrous.

    I feel sorry for him because he is so socially isolated and so thoroughly indoctrinated. I guess there’s not a lot I can do other than be friendly to him and reassure him that there’s nothing wrong with being gay, and that being gay doesn’t mean you can’t still be a Christian.

    I don’t harp on it constantly, and I’m conscious of his youth and lack of contact with the non-fundy world. I just hope that some of it will seep in.

    Any thoughts or suggestions?

    Fastlane #36

    They point to various NT verses.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homosexuality_in_the_New_Testament

  41. Ichthyic:

    Any thoughts or suggestions?

    hmm. I would immediately suggest a support group so they don’t feel entirely isolated.

    give them examples of people like Andrew Sullivan, who is staunchly Catholic but also gay.

    People can compartmentalize and live with it, though I’d of course just recommend ditching the part that is irrelevant to one’s sexual identity (namely, the religious part).

    if they view homosexuality as a sin, ask them what else they view as sins, and get them to realize they live with these things every day as well; there is nothing unique about it to make it any different to any other “sin”.

    and FFS, don’t listen to TV preachers.

  42. Ichthyic:

    here’s a link to both Andrew’s discussion of this, AND a debate regarding his position.

    get your acquaintance to watch the video, first. THEN introduce them to the debate of it.

    http://whyevolutionistrue.wordpress.com/2011/10/25/andrew-sullivan-explains-why-hes-gay-but-still-catholic/

  43. Ichthyic:

    example of Andrew’s reasoning that might help your friend:

    I’m not a Catholic because of issues like gayness. I’m a Catholic because of what I believe to be its revelation of the truth about everything. And either it’s true or it isn’t. And it’s possible for it to be true on some core levels, and yet mistaken, and misplaced, and misguided in other areas. And if you look at the history of the Church, it’s full of it. So I try and hang in there, and let God do the rest.

    seems to work for him.

    I won’t poke holes in it; you can do that when you think it appropriate.

  44. ambulocetacean:

    Hi Icthyic,

    Thanks for that. I will link him to the video (not, initially, via the WEIT page). I hope the fact that Sullivan is Catholic won’t get him to disengage immediately (I’m not sure how anti-Catholic his brand of fundianity is). I’ll try to think of other gay Christians too. I have pointed out that the Anglicans and other churches have gay clergy, but it might be helpful to use examples of individuals like Sullivan.

    I personally find that video to be emetic mental contortionism. I can’t understand how anyone (including my own mother) can remain part of the RCC.

    Yeah, I have suggested he look into support groups and teen-advice telephone lines (at one stage I gave him a list of phone numbers). He doesn’t seem interested, but I suppose all you can do is plant the seed.

    ” I’d of course just recommend ditching the part that is irrelevant to one’s sexual identity (namely, the religious part).”

    I suspect that if he ever does ditch religion it’s going to be a ways down the track. It’s all he knows. He has been home-schooled by fundies and he takes perverse pride in once having met psycho home-schooling “expert” Ron Swanson, who is a rabid homophobe.

    http://www.rightwingwatch.org/category/people/kevin-swanson

    Anyway, cheers and thanks again,
    Amby

  45. Ichthyic:

    I personally find that video to be emetic mental contortionism.

    so do I.

    like I said though, your friend has a great need to learn how to compartmentalize in the immediate sense.

    best example of that I can think of.

  46. ambulocetacean:

    “there is nothing unique about it to make it any different to any other “sin”.”

    Eh. I dunno about that. Like most people I have at times lied, stolen, cheated and been unkind, but I have felt bad about it and certainly never resolved to make it a way of life.

    The only real “sin” that I enthusiastically embrace — having (hetero) sex without being married — would be anathema to my pal. And probably not an appropriate topic for discussion given that he is only 15.

    BTW, I meant Kevin Swanson, not Ron Swanson. Ron Swanson is a character from Parks and Recreation.

  47. ambulocetacean:

    “like I said though, your friend has a great need to learn how to compartmentalize in the immediate sense.”

    Yeah, I get it.

  48. dingojack:

    Rnagingbee (#12) – “Love without truth is hate“. Never has there been a deepity nugget that has so accurately (and pithily) expressed the very essence of christian fundamentalism.
    tbp1 (#30) – “Well, it depends on the man. I had a man around. He used to wake me up every morning by flicking lit cigarettes at my head. He’d say, ‘Hey, asshole, get up and make me breakfast!’ You know, Mrs. Buckman, you need a license to buy a dog, or drive a car. Hell, you need a license to catch a fish! But they’ll let any butt-reaming asshole be a father”. – Parenthood (1989).

    This article should end with: “Looking back, this lecture marked the moment when I first released that dad was merely a spiteful, self-aggrandizing, intolerant asshole groveling pathetically for the approval of a monstrous, tantrum-throwing, cry-baby child-god he created in his own image.
    It was my very first step* toward becoming the happy, fulfilled and proud gay man (and atheist) I am today!” – Barber Jr. in twenty years time.

    Dingo
    ——-
    * “well that, and the day they discovered him dead amongst a litter of santorum, poppers and licorice-flavoured lube in a seedy motel room off the I-90, dressed in a couple of wet-suits with a rubber duck shoved up his down ramp”

  49. Ichthyic:

    Like most people I have at times lied, stolen, cheated and been unkind, but I have felt bad about it and certainly never resolved to make it a way of life.

    you still have to live with that, the only reason homosexuality is considered a “greater” sin than any of those things, is simply because you have people pushing it as hotbutton issue.

    in short… politics.

    even the most rabid gay hating churches talk about “actions” being sinful, and thus, by their own logic stealing should be no great a sin by action than “gay sex”.

    or, for that matter, talking back to your parents, adultery, etc etc.

    ask your friend what Jesus said was the worst “sin”.

  50. Ichthyic:

    * “well that, and the day they discovered him dead amongst a litter of santorum, poppers and licorice-flavoured lube in a seedy motel room off the I-90, dressed in a couple of wet-suits with a rubber duck shoved up his down ramp”

    Matt Barber’s dad was Gary Aldridge?

  51. ambulocetacean:

    ” churches talk about “actions” being sinful, and thus, by their own logic stealing should be no great a sin by action than “gay sex”.”

    But my point is that the two are not equivalent. Saying “Being gay is no worse than being a thief” is not much of a recommendation.

  52. Ichthyic:

    . Saying “Being gay is no worse than being a thief” is not much of a recommendation.

    the sin is based on the action, not the sinner.

    to be more accurate, it would be: “having gay sex is no different a sin than stealing your dad’s shoes”

    the point is, to start getting to realize just how ridiculous the very idea of “sin” is to begin with.

    You have to remember, when it comes down to it, fundies don’t really think people are “gay”, no more than they think there are real atheists. They think everyone is straight, and fears god, and the rest is just choice on their part.

    work within HIS system first.

  53. dingojack:

    “… churches talk about “actions” being sinful…”
    See Matthew 5:28.
    Dingo

  54. ambulocetacean:

    “You have to remember, when it comes down to it, fundies don’t really think people are “gay”, no more than they think there are real atheists. They think everyone is straight, and fears god, and the rest is just choice on their part.”

    Good point. (As an aside, he seems to be part of a predestinationist sect, which makes it all the more headdesk-worthy.)

    But do you get my point? Gay sex (with a consenting, age-appropriate partner) is a victimless “crime”. Theft (though it can be justified in some circumstances) is generally not.

    To impress upon my new acquaintance the harmlessness of the “sin” of gay sex I would need to equate it with something similarly harmless. But the only things I can think of — unmarried hetero sex, blasphemy — are things that he would find repugnant anyway. He believes that the NT supersedes the OT, so I can’t go the bacon route.

    At least he completely rejects his religious authority figures’ assertions that heavy metal is of the devil. He hasn’t put any thought into it, but at least it shows that he is capable of picking and choosing to suit himself. Maybe one day he’ll decide that gay is the new heavy metal.

  55. ambulocetacean:

    “See Matthew 5:28.”

    What a vile verse that is.

  56. Ichthyic:

    But do you get my point? Gay sex (with a consenting, age-appropriate partner) is a victimless “crime”. Theft (though it can be justified in some circumstances) is generally not.

    that’s the second thing you need to hit him with though.

    the first is seeing that each sin is all relative, even according to their own dogma, and that was MY point.

    At least he completely rejects his religious authority figures’ assertions that heavy metal is of the devil

    great! this leaves the room I’m talking about for showing him that the only reason he has the impression that homosexuality is a “hellworthy” sin is simply because he had peers telling him so. There is no dogma stating such in the bible, thus it indeed is a persona projection of various sects and preachers that he can just as safely ignore as them decrying “heavy metal” as a “gateway to hell”.

    get him to recognize that his peers have been lying to him first, THEN you can start working on getting him to recognize that there is nothing wrong with who he is or who he desires to have sex with.

    you have to treat him as if he has been brainwashed by a dangerous cult, and you have to work on “deprogramming” first.

    there have been many articles written over the last few decades dealing with the psychology involved with how someone gets these behavior patterns instilled in them to begin with, and what works best to try to remove them. if you’re serious about helping this person, I’d recommend getting some professional advice, but barring that, articles like this might give you some insight:

    http://www.holysmoke.org/kh/kh-sex_drugs_and_cults.pdf

  57. ambulocetacean:

    Hi Icthyic,

    I’ve tried that sort of tack, but his thing is that there is no specific prohibition of heavy metal in the bible, while there are specific prohibitions of homosexual acts.

    There’s not much reasoning going on. Hopefully one day he’ll just arbitrarily flip the switch and decide that gay is OK.

    Thanks for that article. I’ll give it a read.

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